Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Extra, Extra, Read All About It

I subscribe by email to breast cancer updates from a few websites.  Today I received a message about a breast cancer slide show from WebMD.

It has only 25 slides, with a small written narrative for each, and I thought it was very well done.  Check it out.  It's a quick, easy to understand overview about breast cancer.

http://www.webmd.com/breast-cancer/slideshow-breast-cancer-overview?ecd=wnl_brc_101210

One of the members on my favorite cancer message board posted the next article, starting a discussion among members.  The article is about the "Pink Ribbon" machine and how some breast cancer activists would like to change the way we think about breast cancer.  Instead of focusing on survival, how bout we focus on prevention!!!  There are several members on the message boards that really dread October.  I get that now.

http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/10/11/pink-ribbon-fatigue/?emc=eta1

This next one, True North tweeted about.  It's all about brain fog and how it may be related to the actual cancer, and not necessarily the chemo.  I'll tell you, my neuropathy and fatigue are hanging on, but every day since taking the Sam-e and exercising it feels as if the brain fog is lifting.  I definitely relate to the double whammy for breast cancer patients, dealing with treatment, which has the added bonus of throwing you into menopause.  Chemo brain?  Cancer brain?  Menopause brain?

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/12/health/research/12mental.html?emc=eta1

Thanks Duncle for getting on the band wagon and sending both NY Times articles to me, not knowing they were already on my radar.

I am only two weeks away from my BLM.  Yikes.  I've been doing my best to get a handle on handling the ongoing side effects of chemo even though chemo is over, and grieving over travelling to the Kingdom of Lost Breasts.  If that is not enough, now comes the next wave of common side effects and collateral damage from mastectomy and lymph node surgery.

You've heard of PMS; how about PMPS?  Post-mastectomy pain syndrome is ongoing nerve pain that occurs in 20-60% of women following lumpectomy or mastectomy.  The most common signs of PMPS are chest wall pain and tingling down the arm.

Hello, yes, I'd like a side of neuropathy to go with my neuropathy.  Hold the onions.

Can you say lymphedema?  This is swelling in the arm of the affected side after lymph node removal and/or radiation, and can start immediately after surgery, or may take months or years to develop.  Once it does, it can be managed but not cured.

Remember this Mft, what you wrote after I finished chemo?

How about a river rafting metaphor. 5 months of kick ass, whitewater rapids and now there is a piece of calm river. You can rest your paddle on the edge of the raft and gaze at the beautiful landscape. Relax and catch your breath because the guide says there is another rapid ahead. Rest your paddle honey. XOXOXO

Did I miss the calm river part?

Ok kids, rapids ahead, you coming with me? 

Get ready for paddles in the water.

1 comment:

masonmft said...

I may have misjudged how damn fast the quiet part of the river was running. Fast, baby, fast. Make sure your life jacket is secure and get ready to paddle. Love you.

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